Our Lady of Africa in Ceuta in 2021

Our Lady of Africa in Ceuta in 2021
Nave of the church of Santa María de África, Cueta. Image by Diego Delso , via License CC-BY-SA

  How long until Our Lady of Africa?
This holiday next takes place in 318 days.
  Dates of Our Lady of Africa in Ceuta
2022 Fri, Aug 5Regional Holiday
2021 Thu, Aug 5Regional Holiday
2020 Wed, Aug 5Regional Holiday
2019 Mon, Aug 5Regional Holiday
2018 Mon, Aug 6Regional Holiday
  Summary
The Church of Santa María de África was consecrated on August 5th 1752

When is Our Lady of Africa?

Our Lady of Africa is a regional public holiday in the Spanish autonomous city of Ceuta on August 5th each year.

Also referred to as Patron's Day, this holiday honours the patron saint of Ceuta, the Virgin Mary.

History of Our Lady of Africa

Ceuta is a Spanish enclave located on the north coast of Africa surrounded by the Kingdom of Morocco.

Even though Assumption Day, a major holiday that is related to Mary takes place on August 15th, the date chosen to mark her Patronage of Ceuta is August 5th, the date when the Church of Santa María de África was consecrated in 1752.

Ceuta's association with Our Lady of Africa dates back to 1421, when having been conquered by Portugal six year earlier, Henry the Navigator sent a picture of Our Lady of Africa to the city. The picture was used to guide the building of the first Church of Santa María de África.

The current Church of Santa María de África dates back to 1676, by which time Ceuta had been ceded to the Spanish, though it is not known if this was built on the location of the mediaeval church or in a different place.

The church is of Baroque style and underwent a renovation during the first half of the 18th century resulting in its current appearance.

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